Researching families and social change | 31 maio | 11h | online

No dia 31 de maio, pelas 11h, o LIFE Webinars contará com a participação de Julia Brannen, Emerita Professor at Thomas Coram Research Unit, UCL Institute of Education.

Acesso ao evento via Zoom

In my book Social Research Matters (2021 Bristol University Press), I was interested in the idea of a research career as evolutionary and interactive in the ways in which research is practiced, while also shaped by the contexts of disciplines, institutions, societal concerns and the body politic. In this talk I will focus on some of the topics that colleagues and I have researched and the approaches we have worked with together. Without exception the projects were externally funded.  First, I will focus on matters to do with studying contemporary family lives.

This means taking a stance that some, though not all, family practices are habitual, that is, they may not be reflected upon.  Second, I will focus on the importance of studying families in historical context and to understand family lives through the perspective of life course and biography. As I shall argue, research participants, especially in interviews, may not make connections to the weight of the past or the contexts in which their lives unfolded.  Third, I will suggest that the stories that people recount about family life and about the past have to be interpreted as stories. As Atkinson (2015) suggests, this means analysing them as embedded in and products of encounters and interactions. The third approach therefore involves adopting a narrative perspective. Each of these approaches helps us to understand family change. However, each approach produces and is likely to require a variety of types of data; no single methodological strategy suffices.

Short Bio

Julia Brannen is Emerita Professor of the Sociology of the Family, Thomas Coram Research Unit, UCL Institute of Education, London, and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Science. She has an international reputation for research on family lives of children, young people and parents. Her research topics include work-family life, intergenerational relations, and food in families. She also is known for her expertise in methodology in particular mixed methods, biographical approaches and comparative research. Recent single and co-authored books include: Families and Food in Hard Times: European research (UCL Press 2021); Social Research Matters: A life in family sociology (Policy Press 2019); Living Hand to Mouth: Children and food in low-income families London: CPAG; Fathers and Sons: Generations, Families and Migration (Palgrave 2015).

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